Borrowed English Words

Discover which English words came from other languages.
  • 1Do you often use shampoo or put ketchup on your food?
  • 2Have you ever visited a sauna?
  • 3If you think these words are originally English, you'd better think again.
  • 4In fact, each of these words comes from a different language!
  • 5Shampoo, for example, is actually a word from the Hindi language in India.
  • 6This word originally meant "massage."
  • 7In hair shops in India, barbers massage your head while washing your hair.
  • 8Over time, British people in India used this word to mean "a liquid that cleans hair."
  • 9Almost everyone knows what ketchup is.
  • 10People all over the world like to pour this tomato sauce on French fries or sandwiches.
  • 11This word is originally Chinese from "ketsiap," a fish sauce.
  • 12In the 1600s, British and Dutch sailors brought this fish sauce to Europe.
  • 13Over time, people changed the sauce by adding tomato flavor to it,...
  • 14...but the name basically stayed the same.
  • 15Sauna, a popular type of public steam room and shower facility,...
  • 16...comes from the Finnish language.
  • 17During one of the European Olympics,...
  • 18...athletes from Britain and Germany saw Finnish athletes use saunas after training.
  • 19Later, the general public all over Europe started using this style of bathing, too.
  • 20Now, we still use this word to describe all kinds of steam rooms.
  • 21English is full of many wonderful borrowed words from many languages.
  • 22Perhaps English should change its name to Eng-hin-chi-fin-fre-ger-ital-span-ish!